Gilas newbie Troy Rike praised for effort to pacify the mob during brawl
Troy Rike, the youngest player in the Gilas Pilipinas’ 15-man roster for the third window of the Fiba World Cup Qualifier, was commended for his heroic effort during the brawl between the Philippines and Australia.
The 22-year-old Gilas cadet shielded Australia’s Chris Goulding, who laid flat on his back behind the stanchion, from the mobbing fans.
“I admire Troy Rike. Rike saved our country last night (Monday),” Ronald Mascariñas, president of Bounty Agro Ventures Inc. and Gilas backer, praised.
“Kung hindi sa action ni Troy Rike, basag yung ulo nung nakahiga na yun. By protecting this person, nakita niya yung repercussions,” he added. “Even with his youth, he saw things beyond that moment.”
(If not for Troy Rike’s action, the player who was down on the floor would’ve had serious injuries. By protecting this person, he saw the repercussions.)
Rike was invited by Mascariñas to his office on Wednesday and was given an incentive that he knew nothing about.
Mascariñas handed the Filipino-American center a check amounting to P100,000.
“Obviously, I’m new to Gilas. So when I found out Chooks-to-Go was nice enough to give Gilas some incentives to the players, I was very happy,” said Rike.
Rike continues to show acts of kindness as he wants to split his reward and give to a Filipino and Australian charity.
“And I made the decision to take some of that money and do something good with it. I’m planning to split it and give 50,000 to a Filipino charity and 50,000 to an Australian charity as well.”
Upon finding out Rike’s plan, Mascariñas added P100,000 to the charities chosen, which are the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute in Australia and World Vision Philippines.
“Going forward, hopefully, it will do some good and other people will do the same because that is what basketball is all about, bringing people together and giving people something to cheer for. So I hope, this is a good first step to show what we are all about as a country and as a team,” Rike said.
Rike hopes everyone will finally move on from what has been a dark time for those involved in the fight.
“Players and my teammates express their regret for their actions and some Australian players have expressed their regret as well,” said Rike. “Obviously, both of us wish what happened would not have had happened because that is not what either country is about. We can’t take that back and the only thing we could do is move forward and do some good with that.”
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